Whitman's spending surpasses Bloomberg's mark

Jessica M. Karmasek Sep. 17, 2010, 11:29am


SACRAMENTO (Legal Newsline) - California Republican gubernatorial candidate Meg Whitman became the biggest U.S. campaign self-spender ever this week, putting another $15 million into her campaign.

The former eBay CEO made the deposit late Tuesday, bringing her total contribution to $119,075,806.11, according to The Sacramento Bee.

On Wednesday, Whitman defended the personal contributions while at the San Francisco headquarters of online review site Yelp, saying they mean she won't be beholden to special interests if she wins. She also argued she must spend a lot of money in a state where there are 2.3 million more registered Democrats than Republicans.

Whitman has now surpassed New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who invested $110 million of his own money to win a close race last year.

On Thursday, the former mayor defended Whitman's spending. Bloomberg told The Associated Press her spending record shows she must care about California and believes she can improve it. He points out that other candidates spend the public's money.

In addition to her own money, Whitman has also raised more than $20 million from outside sources, according to campaign contribution records.

The billionaire is locked in a neck-and-neck race with Democratic opponent Jerry Brown, California's current attorney general, who only began running paid advertising last week.

Whitman has said she will spend "whatever it takes" to win.

From Legal Newsline: Reach Jessica Karmasek by e-mail at jessica@legalnewsline.com.

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